UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)

A summary of UK Research and Innovation's open access policy and their requirements for researchers who receive funding from them.

Requirements overview

Requirement Detail
Acknowledge
the funder
Required
Data accessibility
statement
Required
Rights retention
statement
Advised for compliance
Specific licence

Short-form: CC BY or OGL licence required

Long-form (post 2024): Any CC BY licence permitted

Embargo limit

Short-form: No embargo permitted

Long-form (post 2024): 12 months or less

Deposit locations

EPMC deposit required (BBSRC/MRC funded)

NORA deposit (see details)

Payment exclusions

No payment of hybrid journal APCs

No payment of page or colour charges

Pay-cap for long-form open access charges

Payment source

Short-form: Oxford UKRI block grantOpen for applications

Long form: Two stage, UKRI monograph fund: Open for applications

Other notes

New monograph policy starting 1st January 2024

Preprints encouraged


Further policy details

Expand All

The policy applies to peer‐reviewed papers (except invited reviews) which acknowledge Research Council funding, submitted for publication between 1st April 2013 and 1st April 2022:

Research council Policy overview
Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from AHRC-sponsored research must be available Open Access within 12 months of publication.
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence.
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
  • The AHRC does not currently require scholarly monographs funded by the AHRC to be made available through open access.
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from BBSRC-sponsored research must be available Open Access within six months of the publication date.
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence.
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
  • BBSRC also encourages authors to deposit biomedical articles in Europe PubMed Central (EuropePMC).
  • Publication costs other than journal articles and conference papers, such as books, monographs, critical editions, catalogues etc. that are incurred within the period of the grant may be included within grant applications.
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from EPSRC-sponsored research must be available Open Access within six months of the publication date
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence.
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from ESRC-sponsored research must be available Open Access within 12 months of publication
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence.
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
Medical Research Council (MRC)
  • MRC’s open access policy requires you to make your research output available via Europe PMC within 6 months of publication
    • this could be the published pdf if article was published open access; otherwise it’s the final peer-reviewed manuscript.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from NERC-sponsored research must be available open access within 6 months of the publication date
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences.
  • NERC Open Research Archive  (NORA) is for the publications of staff in NERC Research Centres.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.
Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings arising from STFC-sponsored research must be available Open Access within 6 months of the publication date
  • If there is no money to pay, a longer embargo period of 12 months is permitted for STEM-funded disciplines, or 24 months for the arts, humanities and social sciences.
  • Where an APC is paid to make an article openly available immediately, the article must be published under a CC BY licence
  • For open access via deposit a CC BY-NC licence, or equivalent is acceptable. CC BY-NC-ND is not compliant.

What is covered by the policy

Peer-reviewed research articles, including reviews and conference papers, that are accepted for final publication in either a journal, conference proceeding with an International Standards Serial Number (ISSN), or publishing platform.

This policy covers items SUBMITTED after 01/04/2023. Short-form publications submitted before this date should consult the previous policy.

Short list of short-form outputs covered in the policy

Covered outputs Outputs not covered

Research articles

Short reports

Case studies

Rapid communications

All review types (invited and non-invited / including literature reviews)

Notes and queries or research notes

Micro-articles

Technical notes

Forum

Opinion

Perspective

Letters

Protocols

Editorials

Methods

Commentaries

Book reviews

Theoretical articles (opinion pieces)

Further criteria

Licence requirement

UKRI requires the open access version of a research article to be published under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence.

There are two exceptions to this requirement:

  • An Open Government Licence (OGL) can be used when a research article is subject to Crown Copyright.
  • While a CC BY licence is appropriate in most cases, UKRI may permit, on a case-by-case basis, the use of a more restrictive Creative Commons Attribution No-derivatives (CC BY-ND) licence for the open access version of a research article.
Rights retention text

For the article to be published under Route 2, submissions must include the following text in the funding acknowledgement section of the manuscript and any cover letter/note accompanying the submission:

‘For the purpose of open access, the author(s) has applied a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence (where permitted by UKRI, ‘Open Government Licence’ or ‘Creative Commons Attribution No-derivatives (CC BY-ND) licence’ may be stated instead) to any Author Accepted Manuscript version arising’

The University of Oxford advises authors to include this statement on all their submitted outputs for full coverage.

Embargo not permitted

A publisher-requested delay or ‘embargo period’ between publication of the Version of Record and open access of the deposited version is not permitted.

Research council deposit requirements

Biomedical research articles that acknowledge MRC or BBSRC funding are required to be archived in Europe PubMed Central, in accordance with MRC’s Additional Terms and Conditions and BBSRC’s Safeguarding Good Scientific Practice statement.

NERC Open Research Archive (NORA) is the joint repository of outputs produced by researchers at the British Antarctic Survey, British Geological Survey, UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and the National Oceanography Centre. For either open access route, researchers based at these institutions should deposit a copy of their publication in NORA.

Paying for UKRI short-form publication

See: https://openaccess.web.ox.ac.uk/applying-block-grants

The use of UKRI funds for publishing in a ‘hybrid’ journal that is not part of a transitional arrangement that meets the research sector’s requirements as set out by Jisc (UK digital, data and technology agency focused on tertiary education, research and innovation) is not permitted.

(All quotations taken from UKRI policy page on 12/06/2023)

DISCLAIMER: Further guidance from UKRI on the new monographs policy is due in autumn 2023.

What is covered by the policy

Applies to: Monographs, books, critical editions, volumes, catalogues

This policy covers items PUBLISHED before 01/01/2024. Long-form publications published after this date should consult the new policy

Paying for UKRI long-form publication

A researcher who is applying for a new UKRI grant and who wishes to request support for the payment of publication costs associated with the production of other types of research outputs that are not covered currently by the UKRI OA policy (e.g. publication costs for outputs such as monographs, books, critical editions, volumes and catalogues) should ask for these costs directly on their grant proposal(s).

UKRI will be making dedicated funding available once the monographs policy is live in 2024. Contact the Open Access Payments team at oapayments@bodleian.ox.ac.uk if you are planning to publish a long form output after 1 Jan 2024 that is the outcome of a UKRI grant.

This policy covers items PUBLISHED after 01/01/2024. Long-form publications published before this date should consult the previous policy.

What is covered by the policy

Monographs, book chapters and edited collections published on or after 1 January 2024.

Seven year publication window

In-scope outputs published seven or more years after the formal end of a UKRI-funded project, will not be eligible for UKRI open access funding. UKRI will not expect such outputs to be made open access. This threshold recognises that long-form outputs can be published many years after the end of a UKRI-funded project and over time the link between them will likely become less substantial.

Further criteria

Embargo allowance

The final Version of Record or the Author’s Accepted Manuscript must be free to view and download via an online publication platform, publishers’ website, or institutional or subject repository within a maximum of 12 months of publication

Licence requirement

UKRI requires the open access version of long-form outputs to be published under a Creative Commons licence. A Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence is preferred to maximise opportunity for sharing and reuse but other Creative Commons licences are permitted. An Open Government Licence is also permitted when authors are subject to Crown Copyright.

Policy exemptions

Please note:

Open access is a requirement for monographs, edited collections and book chapters that acknowledge our funding, therefore you should seek to publish open access wherever possible, prior to using an exemption.

Exemptions
Prior 01/01/2024 contract signing exemption
[If you have] signed a contract with a publisher before 1 January 2024, which doesn’t enable open access in compliance with UKRI’s policy
Sole publication venue exemption

Where the only appropriate publisher, after liaison and consideration, is unable to offer an open access option that complies with UKRI’s policy.

Training grant publication exemption

Monographs, book chapters and edited collections arising from UKRI training grants are exempt from UKRI’s open access requirements where the training grant is the only UKRI funding source acknowledged. Where possible, UKRI expects research organisations to support researchers to make such outputs open access.

Third party copyright 

The open access version should include, where possible, any images, illustrations, tables and other supporting content

Third party exemption

UKRI’s licensing requirements do not apply to any materials included within a long-form output that are provided by third-party copyright holders. Academic books published under a CC BY, or other creative commons licence may include third-party materials (such as images, photographs, diagrams or maps) which are subject to a more restrictive licence or on an ‘All Rights Reserved’ basis. UKRI considers this approach compliant with its policy.

UKRI recognises that there may be some instances where permissions for reuse in an open access book cannot be obtained for all third-party images or other materials. Therefore, an exception to the policy may be applied when:

a. reuse permissions for third-party materials cannot be obtained and there is no suitable alternative option available to enable open access publication.

For more information on third party copyright please see UKRI's guidance documents.

Paying for third party copyright images

Anticipated costs for clearing rights for third-party materials such as images that will be needed to publish your research. These should continue to be included in research funding applications. Some additional funding for these costs may also be available via the open access fund.

Paying for UKRI long-form publication

The open access fund for monographs, book chapters and edited collections is expected to launch for stage 1 applications from research organisations on 28 November 2023.

Stage one

The research organisation registers the output(s) with UKRI for funding via an online form hosted by Citizen Space. A publishing contract does not need to have been signed at this stage.

UKRI will review the application and confirm if the output(s) will be eligible for funding. Successful applications will need to demonstrate a substantial link between the publication and UKRI research funding, as well as between the author and UKRI research funding.

Stage two

The research organisation provides confirmation of publication to UKRI to enable the release of the funds. This stage will be completed via UKRI’s Funding Service.

Long form publication pricing caps

UKRI provides funding for the following open access models: Subscribe to open agreements, book processing charges, and book chapter processing charges. 

Permissible costs are:  

  • Up to £10,000 (including VAT) for entire monographs and edited collections 

  • Up to £1,000 (including VAT) for book chapters 

  • Up to £6,000 for non-book processing charge models where one eligible UKRI output is published.

(Quotations last taken from UKRI policy pages on 16/11/2023)

Further information

Expand All

While the UK was not associated to Horizon Europe, UKRI, on behalf of the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, have guaranteed funds awarded to researchers who have been successful at applying for a Horizon Europe grant.

Authors funded by the ‘Horizon Europe guarantee’ scheme are funded by UKRI but will need to follow the Horizon Europe open access policy. They are not eligible to apply for funding from the UKRI block grant and need to fund OA publication costs from their grant.

Researchers applying to Horizon Europe should include publication costs in their budgets so that they can comply with the Horizon Europe open access policy and use these funds to pay for OA publication costs.

Read more guidance about the Horizon Europe Grantee scheme

What is covered

If you are a DPhil student who is funded by UKRI for the entirety of your DPhil, then the UKRI open access policy applies to:

  • your thesis 
  • publications based on your DPhil funded research during your DPhil
  • publications based on your DPhil funded research after you have finished your DPhil (see below on re-use of data).

Note: After 1st January 2024, this will include monographs and book chapters.

If you are funded for a specific piece of work during your DPhil, then the UKRI open access policy applies to that specific piece of work.

Learn about UKRI’s open access policy

Official wording

The UKRI Terms and conditions for training funding state in section 11 Exploitation and Impact that:

11.4 Students supported by the Training Grant shall, subject to the procedures laid down by the Research Organisation, publish the results of their research, excluding theses (see TGC 11.5), funded by the Training Grant, in accordance with normal academic practice and Our policy on open access.

Publications and other forms of media communication, including media appearances, press releases and conferences, must acknowledge the support received from Us, quoting the Training Grant reference number if appropriate. Please see details on how to acknowledge funding from UKRI.

Go to our templates page to find official acknowledgement wording

Grants awarded before the policy start date, and closed grants

The policy applies to a publication arising from pre-existing and closed awards if it is an in-scope research article submitted for publication on or after 1 April 2022, or an in-scope monograph, book chapter or edited collection published on or after 1 January 2024.

What to do

Thesis deposit and embargoes

You will need to deposit a copy of your thesis into the Oxford University Research Archive.

UKRI have several requirements for this that are outlined on the thesis LibGuide. 

Go to the University of Oxford thesis LibGuide

Training for Oxford DPhils depositing their thesis

Journal articles and conference papers

If you:

  1. have published a journal article or conference paper
  2. and this is during your DPhil (or after – see below about the re-use of data)
  3. and it acknowledges the funding from your DPhil

then the UKRI open access policy applies to this work and you may apply for funds from our Oxford-held block grant to assist with compliance. (Please note the criteria for payment and funder requirements.)

Apply to the Oxford University UKRI APC block grant

Book chapters

If you:

  1. have published a book chapter
  2. and publication is after 1st January 2024
  3. and it acknowledges the funding from your DPhil

then the post-1st January 2024 policy on book chapters will apply.

Monographs based on your thesis

There are special exemptions to the 1st January 2024 open access monograph policy for "UKRI issued training grant" students who are publishing a monograph based on their thesis.

You do not need to follow the open access monograph section of the policy. However, you are allowed to apply for open access funding from the monograph fund hosted by UKRI either through your new institution or as a solo researcher. This would allow you to benefit from an open access monograph.

Publishing works unrelated to your UKRI DPhil funding

If, for example, you publish an article that is a re-written version of your masters dissertation and UKRI did not fund this masters, then UKRI will not be acknowledged on that paper and therefore you do not need to follow the policy.

You can, of course deposit the article into ORA for ‘green’ open access or make use of publisher deals to publish ‘gold’ open access if you wish.

If you feel you need to acknowledge your research funding, then the policy will need to be followed for applicable outputs.

Publishing outputs based on UKRI-funded DPhil data

If an output is a result or adaptation of research that you undertook while having UKRI funding, then that output needs to comply with UKRI open access policy.

Any subsequent work created by building on data collected during a DPhil is considered a secondary project and would not need to comply.

For example, if a UKRI-funded DPhil

  1. writes a thesis based on research they carried out while they were UKRI funded
  2. makes their thesis open access in accordance with the rules of their training grant
  3. goes on to do additional post-doc research funded from another source, though building on the data collected during their DPhil

then they wouldn’t be subject to the UKRI policy, because the second research project, even though it draws on existing data, is a separate exercise.

However, if they

  1. adapt the thesis into a journal article using content which is broadly the same as the thesis
  2. acknowledge funding received during their doctorate
  3. are using data collected during the DPhil which has not yet been used for their thesis or any published work

then they ought to comply and acknowledge UKRI.

Funding for publication

If you are publishing articles and conference papers that are in scope of the UKRI open access policy (see above) you may apply for funds from the block grant.

Note payment exemptions and fund status.

If you are publishing in a journal covered by an Oxford-signed publisher deal during the duration of your DPhil, you should submit using your @ox.ac.uk email address and make use of the deal.

Note: many deals will not be available to you after you have left the University.

If you are publishing a monograph based on your thesis you may apply for open access publication funding from the UKRI managed monograph fund.

Note: there is no guarantee of funding as this output is ‘out of scope’ for the policy.

IEEE have updated their author facing communications on funder compliance and it is now possible to see their author workaround for UKRI compliance on their new funder partner page. On these new webpages, authors can select their funder to see how IEEE support their open access policy (links below).

IEEE Funder Partners – IEEE Open

Post-Publication Policies – IEEE Author Center Journals

The author workaround for route two compliance requires the author to send a request to the IEEE Intellectual Property Rights group at copyrights@ieee.org on submission. This requirement has now been waived for NIHR and Wellcome Trust funded authors but remains for UKRI authors.

In the instance of an anonymous deposit, researchers should include the rights retention text without the funder information:

For the purpose of Open Access, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright licence to any Author Accepted Manuscript (AAM) version arising from this submission.

They should then include their funder acknowledgement and declare funders to the publisher once the anonymity requirement has been lifted. This is likely on acceptance, but may vary.

The Oxford UKRI block grant can be used to pay fees for eLife.

The reviewed preprint will become the version of record and is published open access in eLife, in compliance with the UKRI open access policy.

UKRI have indicated that monograph funding is applied for through the institution. However should you publish a monograph within the 7 year applicability window when you are not at an institution the funder states:

In exceptional circumstances, such as if you are no longer employed by a research organisation, you may be able to directly apply to the fund. You should contact openresearch@ukri.org for guidance before applying.

More information on the UKRI website

 

Flowchart for article publication

Illustrative diagram outlining the publishing process for articles outlined in the table above in ‘what do I need to do at Oxford’